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SIBA’s New ‘Independent Beer Awards 2016’ launched

The South West will be the first to host SIBA’s new-look beer awards taking place in 2016, with the region’s best beers judged this Thursday at the ‘SIBA South West Independent Beer Awards 2016′.

The awards, formerly known as the ‘SIBA South West Beer Competition’ has been rebranded along with the rest of the regional competitions to reflect not only the new-look SIBA but also to highlight the importance of independence in the beer industry at a time when multi-national beer companies are looking to capitalise on craft beer’s popularity.

SIBA’s Managing Director, Mike Benner said, “The SIBA regional beer competitions are very important for our brewing members. Winning these prizes can open many new business doors not only in pubs and supermarkets but also other outlets such as restaurants, bars, hotels and even coffee shops. British independently brewed beer is being enjoyed everywhere!”

Benner continued, “Changing the name of our awards to SIBA’S Independent Beer Awards ensures that it is crystal-clear which beers are being judged in our competitions and that only SIBA members are allowed to enter. We have decided to change the name of the awards to reflect our exciting part of the beer industry that continues to grow. The new title for our awards plays part of a wider re-positioning for SIBA which acknowledges the need to highlight the difference between genuinely independent craft-brewed beers and ‘crafty’ beers from multinational companies.” Mike Benner, SIBA Managing Director.

The competition is separated in to 8 cask beer categories and 9 ‘smallpack’ (bottled and canned) categories, covering the full range of styles now available in the UK – from Bitters, Brown Ales, Milds and Pales Ales, to Porters, Stouts, Old Ales, and Speciality Beers as well as craft brewed lagers and pilsners. The overall Gold winners from these categories will go  forward to be entered in the SIBA national finals in March 2017.

Tuckers Maltings Beer festival, organised by SIBA and now in its 24th year, will be showcasing more than 270 beers from across the South West, with thousands of beer-lovers expected to attend. Last year’s event saw 24,000 pints of drunk across the three-day festival and attracted 5,500 visitors. A full list of category and overall winners will be announced on the 14th of April following intensive judging by beer experts and brewers – making this seen by many as the “brewers’ choice” awards.